American Primitive is a comment on social media.
The subject poses naked and vulnerable wanting all to see, but still afraid to show the true self. Wearing a mask, pretending to be someone or something they are not in hopes to be liked and get likes. Now trapped like a zoo animal behind a facade created for followers and attention. Like most Americans striving for more and trying to keep up, but still unable to fill the void.
The polygonal mask is a reminder of the digital age we all live in. Carbon in color because so many people on social media are “carbon copies” of each other, terrified of stepping outside the instagram box of what everyone else is doing. Insecure about being seen as different and not being accepted. Everyone is the same underneath, skin and bones and our animal instincts remind us that we just want to belong to a tribe, to be loved, but this organic desire has turned into an insatiable obsession for a double tap that will turn into a heart. Instant gratification that last less than an instant, never truly finding the acceptance one seeks in a sea of the same.
The zoo is a reminder of a more primitive, easier time before social media created so much pressure on our lives. Like an animal at the zoo, we are all being gawked at on social media by people we don’t even know. Our lives being displayed in front of people that we have never met and may not want to.